The possible impact of new trade arrangements between the EU and the ACP on women in ACP countries is seen as an issue of critical concern, given the stated objective of the ACP-EU Cooperation with regard to poverty eradication, and since women in many ACP countries form the majority of the poor. Worldwide, women are half of the world's population, head one-third of all households, are responsible for half of the world food production, receive 1/10 of total income and own 1/100 of the world's property. Indeed, in their unequal social and economic status, women earn less, own less and control less, and thus are in a fragile and unequal situation.
This will require the establishment of policies and flanking measures designed to address the specific obstacles and policy constraints women and the poor face. This will need to involve protecting expenditure of greatest importance to women and the poor from budget cuts; changing policies which currently inhibit women’s access to and control over economic resources; establishing programmes specifically designed and implemented in ways which facilitate women’s participation in the opportunities opened up through new trade arrangements.
From the literature review on the trends in ACP-EU co-operation it is clear that past practice has not been gender sensitive. Within development co-operation practice women have largely been marginalized, while a relatively small group of men have been, and continue to be, the decision makers and main beneficiaries of ACP-EU co-operation. A 1997 review of 24 EU funded development projects in ACP countries found that 21 in no way addressed gender inequalities. A study conducted by the Caribbean Association for Feminist Research and Action (CAFRA) - an International Gender and Trade Network member - looked at the effects of ACP-EU co-operation activities in the Windward Islands (Grenada, Dominica, St Lucia and St Vincent and Grenadines) and found that the living conditions of women and their families were not improved materially by the co-operation activities carried out.
With regard to the gender impact of the Cotonou Agreement, a review conducted by Women in Development Europe (WIDE) concluded that “Overall also the Cotonou Agreement itself is unclear and apparently inconsistent on the role of gender and the implications of integrating gender aspects. The sections on economic and trade co-operation, structural adjustment and debt, tourism, other “hard” economic issues and on instruments and management of ACP-EU co-operation do not pay attention to gender, let alone show gender sensitivity”.
This web site is produced with the financial assistance of the European Union by Amici dei Popoli NGO in cooperation Cestas, CMO, Hegoa and Risc. The contents of this web site are the sole responsability of Amici dei Popoli NGO and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.
implemented by OpenContent.
Powered by eZ Publish™ Content Management System.